Ajimobi okays death penalty for kidnappers

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Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi has signed into law a kidnapping prohibition bill, which makes kidnapping a capital offence in the state. The new law states that kidnapping attracts the death sentence in the event of the death of a kidnap victim while in the custody of the abductors. The bill had earlier been passed by the state House of Assembly, following the submission of a report by the Chairman, House Committee on Judiciary and Justice, Olukayode Akande. The Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Michael Adeyemo, and Permanent Secretary/Clerk of the House, Mr. Paul Bankole, had earlier signed the bill before the governor gave it his assent. The law states that a convicted offender will be liable to life imprisonment if the victim is released or rescued unhurt upon the payment of a ransom, while the kidnapper will be made to pay back the ransom.

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Under the new law, which was signed on Friday by the governor, similar punishment will be given to any person who procures, engages or gives information culminating in the kidnapping of a victim.

The law also prescribes life imprisonment for any person who kidnaps or threatens to kill, maim or cause bodily harm in order to compel another person, corporate body or organisation to do or abstain from doing any act as a condition for the release of the victim.

An attempt to kidnap someone attracts 20 years imprisonment awaits, while anybody who aids or abets kidnapping is liable to imprisonment for 15 years upon conviction.

While signing the bill into, Ajimobi commended the lawmakers for its accelerated passage, saying that it would help curb crime and criminal activities in the state.

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